Category Archives: Goals

Enjoy the Journey

Hi friends!  I’m currently enjoying some quality time with my husband 😀  I’ll be back soon, but in the meantime please enjoy this inspiring post from one of my favorite real-life blends, Heather of Then Heather Said.

For a long time it seemed to me that life was about to begin – real life.
But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid.
At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.
This perspective has helped me to see there is no way to happiness.
Happiness is the way.
So treasure every moment you have and remember that time waits for no one.
Happiness is a journey, not a destination.
– Alfred D. Souza

I recently read this quote, which hangs by decorative magnets on my refrigerator.  I have read it dozens of times prior, agreeing silently to myself every time.  This time, however, I read the quote before settling in my living room with my appointment book and journal, ready to tackle the New Year head on.  I have already declared 2011 my healthiest year yet, and I’m determined to stay on top of my goals and plans in order to make sure this is the case.  When I started looking over my schedule of work outs, meal plans, and lists of ‘what to accomplish’ and ‘what to avoid,’ Souza’s quote on the Happiness Journey wouldn’t escape my mind.

Happiness does not come only from reaching my goal weight, but in each step taken to get there.  It comes from my learning how to balance nutrition and indulgence, and with each healthy decision I choose to make. Each minute logged of cardio, each pound of weight I lift, each ounce of soda I replace with an ounce of water. Happiness comes from the week to week battle, the joy of the one pound loss, or the motivation and determination to continue when the scale doesn’t show a loss at all.

Happiness does not come only from the finish line, but in each mile leading to it.  It comes from each training run, no matter how fast or slow.  It comes from those afternoons of speed work, and early mornings filled with tempo runs.  It comes from the time you take to stretch, and cross train, and condition, and rest.  It comes from properly fueling and learning what works best for your body.  It comes from recovery, and survival, and getting it done.

Often, as women setting goals for our health, nutrition, and fitness, we look so far into the future we forget to enjoy the process.  When we take time to enjoy the journey, each step of progression and every moment of development, we open ourselves up to the possibility of deepening our experience with our own determination and success.  Happiness IS the journey.


Filed under Goals, Guest Posting, Then Heather Said

My Goals for 2011

One of the many benefits of having a blog is that it presents a place to document your goals and allows you to hold yourself accountable.  It was really beneficial to look back to my 2010 goals post and evaluate what I set out to accomplish.  I have some big plans for 2011.  Let’s get to it:

Katie’s 2011 Goals


  1. Run a Marathon.  I am SO excited for this goal.  I never ever everrr thought that I would want to run a marathon.  I told myself that my body wasn’t capable of combatting this distance.  You know what, though?  If I put in the training, I CAN and WILL conquer this distance.  On January 19th, Bri and I are signing up for the 2011 Marine Corps Marathon.  Well, at the very least Brian is- military peeps get to register a month early.  If I can’t register early, I will be registered to run this race on February 23rd!  😀
  2. Run a Half-Marathon. I am really excited to run a half-marathon again.  I LOVED my first half experience.  I plan on signing up for the More/Fitness Half in NYC that takes place in early April.  Training will start in early February.  I have a few time goals in mind, the main one being to beat my previous time of 2:13:33.
  3. Continue My Hot Yoga Practice.  A sub-goal of this is to master the standing head to knee pose.  I have a very hard time keeping my knee locked on my standing leg in this pose, which just means that I need to work on strength.  When I’m training for a big race, I want to attend hot yoga 2x/week.  In the off-season, I want to attend a minimum of 4-5x/week. 
  4. Eat Only Grass-Fed Beef.  After reading The Omnivore’s Dilemma, I went pescetarian for the month of December (I’ll get into that in a different post).  Now that January is here, I do think I will introduce meat into my diet.  I will not, however, purchase or eat any meat that comes from a factory farm.  The only meat I will buy is going to come from my local co-op.  I f a restaurant menu indicates that the meat is grass-fed, I will consider ordering it.
  5. Continue to Try New Recipes.  I had a lot of fun experimenting with new recipes and different types of food in 2010 (quinoa, anyone?).  2011 will bring even more fun recipes!


  1. Wake Up Earlier.  I love my sleep.  However, I need to give myself more time to get ready in the morning.  It would be nice to arrive at work fifteen minutes early instead of 9:00 A.M. on the dot. 
  2. Blow Dry My Hair More.  Odd goal, right?  My hair is very fine and straight, which translates to wash and go.  It is great for convenience factor but at the same time, it probably isn’t good to walk outdoors to a coffee shop and walk inside with your hair frozen (this happened to me last week 😉 ).  Plus, it will help me feel more put together.  On that note:
  3. Accessorize More.  During my 30 Day wardrobe challenge, I was forced to think outside of the box with my ten articles of clothing.  This led to increased accessory use, which led to a lot of fun and different outfits.  Accessories can really tie an outfit together.  Plus, I have a lot of fun new necklaces to wear from my lia sophia party.  Woohoo!
  4. Get My Financial Act Together.  I used to be obsessed with personal finance blogs.  Obsessed!  I tracked my finances down to the penny (with pearbudget, love them) and knew where all of my money was going.  I have fallen off of this financial accountability wagon and while I’m not a big spender, I need to be more cognizant of where my money is going. 
  5. Continue to Improve My Public Speaking Abilities.  This one is pretty self-explanatory 😉
  6. Blogging- Finish What I Start.  I have a lot of posts in draft that I just need to write.  A review of Born To Run, my Wardrobe Challenge Recap (from August!), my review of The Omnivore’s Dilemma, etc.  If I say I am going to write something, I need to just write the damn thing!
  7. Blogging- Become Self-Hosted.  I am on tap to go self-hosted at the end of the month, with the help of Savvy Julie.  Very exciting!

Well friends, those are my concrete goals for 2011.  Whatcha think?  What goals have you set for yourself this year?


Filed under Goals

2010 Goals in Review

Hi friends!  I hope that everyone had a relaxing holiday.  Mine was spent google chatting with Bri, eating delicious french toast (now a Christmas tradition), movie watching with Heather (How Do You Know, which , the more I think about, the more I think I didn’t like it), and partaking in an awesome vegetarian dinner.    image

That, my friends, is an epic vegetarian meal.  There was filet for the non-vegetarians, but the main vegetarian course (Cinnamon Lime Quinoa with Apricots and Almonds from Eat Drink and Be Vegan) was bombtastic (in the photo, it is at 12:00). 

Of course, there was also a little birthday celebrating for Mr. B, who turned five yesterday.  image

My little guy is growing up!  It goes by so quickly.  He definitely enjoyed his birthday cupcake from Sloppy Kisses.  image

It’s hard to believe that the year is coming to a close.  2010 went by so quickly, yet so much happened!  I got married, Bri deployed, I fell in love with Bikram yoga, ran a half-marathon… mostly good things 😀  Last January, I set forth a list of goals that I wanted to accomplish in 2010.  I think I achieved most of them 😉  Let’s take a look.

Goals: Professional

1. Complete at least 50 hours of pro-bono work
a. Well, I definitely didn’t achieve this.  I would say I got about 20-25 hours in.  The organization that I was doing the work for was fairly unorganized, with a lot of no-shows.  I’m happy that I got in what I did but at the same time, I should have been more proactive in seeking out other places to volunteer.

2. Become a better small talker and more confident in social situations where I do not know anyone
a. In my job there are lots of networking events where we put in face time with our members. I am not an outgoing person by nature so when I first started (back in September 2008) I put on a brave front but was often very uncomfortable. I have gotten much better in approaching people and making conversation, but I still have room for improvement.

I definitely made some headway towards this goal!  Of course, it’s an ever-evolving process, but I do feel much more comfortable at the events where I am expected to schmooze (hate that word).  I will continue to work on this in 2010.

3. Improve my public speaking abilities
a. I think I improved my public speaking abilities tremendously.  A lot of it is just getting up and doing it time and again.  Of course, there is always room for improvement.  Another goal to continue working on in 2011.

Goals: Health and Fitness

1. Complete the Virginia is For Lovers 14k
a. Yay!  This race was so much fun.   When I first signed up for it last December, the 14k distance seemed huge.  I am so happy that Bri encouraged me to sign up and that I got to run it with him:)

2. Complete the Rock ‘n Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon
a. The half marathon is the ultimate distance for me. I really don’t think my body can handle a marathon; I love running but it is hard on the body and I already had hip issues before running came into the mix. If I could run a half I would be so happy!  Well, I didn’t run the Virginia Beach Half Marathon (due to a certain someone being deployed 😉 ) but I did run the Hudson Mohawk Half.  Yippee!  It was an awesome race and such a great experience.  It is funny how your goals shift- last year I wrote that I didn’t think my body could handle a marathon…heh I am plotting and one may or may not be on my list for 2011. 

3. Attend a yoga class at least once a week in a studio
a. I blew this goal out of the water!  After finding the hot yoga studio in April, I have been practicing consistently in the studio.  During the summer and half training I went two times a week, and since October it has been anywhere from three to five times a week.  And I love it!

4. Run a 5k in under 30:00
a. 😀 I am so happy to have achieved this.  I ran a 5k this past summer in 28:13– it was hard but felt so great!  Of course, now I have a new goal- sub 28 or bust! 😀

5. Continue overall strength training at least once a week
a. Unless you count Bikram yoga as strength training (haha, I do), I have a lot of work to do in this area.  Prior to the wedding I was attending a body sculpting class once a week and doing my own Jillian circuits at the gym.  Body sculpt went out the window once I started practicing hot yoga. 

6. Complete at least 30 pushups in a row
a. Oops. I definitely did not get to 30 pushups in a row.  I am pretty proud that I can do 20 though.  Although, if I tried right now I would probably have to stop at 15. 

7. Incorporate more veggies into my life
a. I definitely accomplished this.  Since I have been eating healthier, my body tends to want vegetables and other healthy items (weird).  Sometimes now I have a salad because it sounds delicious, not because I should. I also found a new favorite veggie- eggplant!  Going out of your comfort zone definitely yields fun surprises. 

Goals: Personal

1. Cook a new dish at least once a month
a. I have tried so  many new recipes this past year.  I discovered that I really like to cook and bake, which was a happy surprise.  Nicole, one of my besties, hosted a 30 recipes in 30 days challenge this past September and while I didn’t quite reach 30 recipes, it was a lot of fun trying.  I’m looking forward to more culinary adventures in 2011!

2. Do more sweet things for Bri
a.I think I achieved this goal (right love? 😉 ) If anything, I am a master package getter-together.  😀

Goals: Financial

1. Save at least $10,000 to put towards an emergency fund.
a. Well, prior to the wedding I had a nice little cushion going.  Hawaii kind of took most of it all of it.  Then I purchased the new car… and yeah, it doesn’t really count as savings if you spend it 😉  Next year 😀

Well, that was quite the list I set for myself last January.  Overall I am incredibly happy with 2010.  I achieved a lot of my goals and also left room to improve for 2011.  Did you achieve the goals you set for yourself this year?  Let me know!

I have some fun posts coming up, including how to layer for winter running (I ran in 20 degree windy weather today, brrrr) and goals for 2011.  See you soon! 😀


Filed under Bailey, Goals, Quinoa, Vegetarian

December Goals

Hi friends!  Happy Wednesday to you 😀  How are y’all doing?  I started coming down with a cold earlier this week so I am currently loading up on tea, water and  lots of vitamin C!  I decided to take the week off of running in order to get better- it is flippin’ cold out and I don’t think that helps the cold much.  Originally I was going to take a break from hot yoga too but what can I say- I’m addicted to it and I’m feeling better 😉

Monday evening was blend-tastic 😀  I got together with some of my favorite local blends to enjoy some of the best pizza I’ve ever had at DeFazio’s in Troy.  If you are local, I highly recommend checking it out!  The staff was super friendly and the pizza was amazing!

Emily and Me.

Courtney and Jen.


I had a lot of fun girls!  I’m looking forward to another blend pizza date in the future 😀

Ah, onto my goals for December.  It’s a little late but I have been following them since the start of the month.



  1. Spend quality time with friends.  ‘Tis the season and what better way to spend it than catching up with friends?  I am heading to Long Island this weekend to spend time with Nicole, one of my oldest and closest friends (and unofficial race photog, woohoo!).  Heather is hosting a fun cookie swap and one of my other besties, Kristin, will be in town for two weeks for Christmas break.  Yes!  It is going to be a fun month.
  2. Change my last name on my social security card and passport.  So simple yet I keep forgetting to do it.  Get ‘er done!
  3. Frame photos for office.  I’ve had a few photos waiting to be put in a frame to be hung on the walls of my office.  For about a year.  No more slacking!
  4. Organize my closet.  Ugh.  Melissa, you should come help.  😀


  1. No meat- track food intake daily to record how meatless diet impacts how I feel.   Why I stopped eating meat this month is a story for another post.  In the meantime, I’ve made a committment to not eat meat and to track everything I eat and drink and record how I feel- tired, well-rested, etc.  So far it is going pretty well!


2.  Maintain base mileage of 40 miles/month.  I’m not sure how this will pan out, seeing as how I am taking this week off.  It’s okay though 😀

3.  Attend three to four hot yoga classes per week, except when traveling.   I love how hot yoga makes me feel.  I am addicted for sure!

4.  Partake in Kacy’s 20 salads in December challenge.  Basically, I have to eat twenty salads this month.  I can totally do it and it is a fun way to incorporate more greens into my life.  So far I am on salad four, I think.  image

My lunch today was a huge salad beast- spring mix, fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and cashews.  The star of the show in this salad was Annie’s Papaya Poppy Seed dressing!  So. Effing. Good!   If you see it, you should buy it! 

So, those are my goals.  Have you set any goals for this month?  Is it flippin’ freezing where you are too? 

Have a good one, peeps!


Filed under 20 salads, Blends, Emmalina Violet, Goals, Jen is Green, Sweet tooth Court

Hello December!

Hi friends!  Can you believe that it is December already? 😀


I can!  And I am excited 🙂  I am THAT much closer to seeing my husband.  Yippee!!   Since it is a brand new month, it is time to review my goals that I set for the month of November to see if I met them:

Goals: Life/Personal

  • Finish our wedding thank you cards. Yes!  Well, for the most part.  The only cards I have left (three or four) are for people that sent gifts a few months after the wedding.  PHEW.
  • Change over last name on passport/social security card.  Big fat NO.  Dang it!
  • Organize closet. Another NO.  December it is!
  • Go Green.  I was kind of successful at this.  It it difficult to not use take out containers and the like!  I definitely need to work harder on this.  Jen, keep me in check!  Heh.

Goals: Health/Fitness

  • Conquer tofu.  YAY!  I totally kicked this goal’s booty.  I wish I had known all along how easy it is to make tofu!  It will definitely be incorporated into my weekly cooking recipe arsenal.
  • Attend hot yoga a minimum of four times a weekYay!  I mostly succeeded at this- attending four times a week with the exception of one week when I was traveling.  I can really tell a difference in my strength and flexibility in practicing so much.  I’m addicted!
  • Maintain a base mileage of 10 miles/week.  Well, I ran forty miles in November so I’ll say I was right on track! 

So, the month of November was a successful one for my fitness goals and a little successful on the personal/life goals.  I got the most important thing out of the way- that being getting almost all of the wedding thank you cards done 🙂 🙂 🙂  Did you meet your November goals?  I’m working on my December goals and will post them shortly 🙂

Soo I don’t remember if I mentioned this on the blog but I randomly decided to enter the lottery for the NYC half-marathon on March 20, 2011.  The drawing is December 15th so I will find out then if I’m in.  In the meantime, Jen has presented me with a fabulous offer- the chance to run the Melbourne Half-Marathon with her on February 6th!  Her parents have a place down there so I would only have to pay for airfare and food and whatnot.  That is awesome enough as it is…but we would also take the time to go here:

the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!   (source)

GAH!  Insert extreme dorkiness here.  😀  I don’t know if I can pass this opportunity up!  BTW, how awesome was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows?  I cannot wait for the next movie to come out! 

The only hesitation I have is that I would 1) have to start training NOW (I am enjoying this laid back running/extra hot yoga) and 2) lots of early morning training runs due to extreme darkness at night.  Ick.  I trained for the Virginia is for Lovers 14k during the winter so I know I could do it.  What do you guys think?  Should I do it??

Enjoy your day, friends!

By the way- thanks for all of the kind thoughts for Bailey.  The poor little guy had to have five teeth pulled 🙂  He handled it like a champ and is enjoying being spoiled with lots of soft, yummy foods 🙂


Filed under Goals, Running

Goals and Green-ness

Good morning!image

Stop taking pictures so I can sleep in peace, devil woman!

Thank you for all of your comments on my first trail race!   There really is something about running in the woods.  I definitely recommend trail running!  You do have to be on higher alert when running in the woods- constantly looking ahead of you to make sure you don’t trip over a rock, branch, your own two feet, piles of leaves and the like.  Over the summer I ran a few times on a trail near my house.  I created two rules for myself when running on the trail: 1) Never wear headphones and 2) Carry mace pepper spray.  Admittedly, I didn’t follow my second rule all the time because I didn’t have pepper spray until I purchased it at the end of summer, but no matter.  When running on the trails, you are typically alone and surrounded by only nature.  I think it is important to be on alert in case any creepers are out there looking to cause harm to someone- hence the pepper spray and lack of headphones.  Do you have any safety rules that you follow while running?  If so, please share! 🙂

Ah, so October is gone and we have two months left in the year.  Hello, November!  😀  I am typically not one to wish life away but with this deployment I am counting down the days/months gleefully.  Since it is the beginning of a new month and racing season is over, I’ve established some new goals that I would like to accomplish:

Goals: Life/Personal

  • Finish our wedding thank you cards.  I wanted to have this done by the six month mark.  I still have 25 to go.  I NEED to get this done before Christmas cards start going out.
  • Change over last name on passport/social security card.  I avoided having to get the title to my car changed by purchasing a new car.  Kidding, kidding 😀 That was a convenient side effect though.  I need to have my passport changed (it is 110 dollars to change it, dang son!) and my social and then I’ll be Katie H on everything!
  • Organize closet.  I’ve been reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubing and in the first chapter she discusses how organizing her closet helped organize her mind.  I totally need to ruthlessly go through and edit my wardrobe. 
  • Go Green.  I’ll discuss below.

Goals: Health/Fitness

  • Conquer tofu.  I would like to learn how to cook tofu at home.  I am very intimidated by it.  Namely because a lot of draining is involved and I don’t know if I will do it right.  Since I am not eating as much meat and love tofu, I need to conquer cooking it!  Any tofu recipes to share?
  • Attend hot yoga a minimum of four times a week.  Ideally I would like to go 5-6 times a week, but I am traveling a lot of the weekends this month.  If I’m not home, I can’t attend the classes.  I am very excited to focus on my yoga practice in these winter months.
  • Maintain a base mileage of 10 miles/week.  Obviously I’m not running as much as I was during training, but I’d still like to maintain some sort of base.  This way, when I start training next year I will have something to work off of!

Do you have any goals for the month of November?

So, one of the goals I mentioned was going green.  My friend and fellow blogger Jen started a really neat challenge last month:

The Green challenge!  I wanted to join last month and then saw what the challenge was- only drinking local wine and beer.  Mmm, I definitely couldn’t adhere to that- I love wine too much.  New York state does have some good wines but they just don’t compare to my Italian chiantis or my Argentinian malbecs.  The thing about Jen’s challenge that I really respect and appreciate is that the challenges actually present a challenge– I am betting it is damn hard for her to only drink locally.  Anyway, this month’s challenge is right up my alley- limiting/reducing plastic use.  Check out her post for more information, but the basic tenets are this: eliminating waste when dining out (unless you can recycle it), no plastic water bottles,  only using to-go cups with coffee/tea (this will definitely be a challenge), no plastic grocery bags, etc.  The challenge lasts for a year.  I am really excited to be on board!  Do you have any tips or tricks on how to reduce plastic use?

Thanks for reading and have a good one, friends!


Filed under Bailey, Goals, Green Challenge, hot yoga, I'm random, Jen is Green, Running

Post Half-Marathon Reflections

My official race photo.   I think it was around mile 11 or 12.  I really was pretty much by myself for the last three miles of the race.  Thumbs up yo.

After about a week and a half, I am feeling back to my normal self after the half-marathon.  I ran five miles last night with my running buddy and the miles flew by.  Thank goodness.  In reading a lot of running blogs I think I underestimated the impact the half-marathon would have on my body, as a lot of girls make it seem like just another day (heck, it probably is for them).  For me, it was a straight up endurance EVENT that tested my limits and required a week of solid rest.   It just goes to show that you CANNOT compare yourself to other runners.  Say you are just starting out and ran a mile without stopping.  If your body is not used to running, it is going to take a LOT out of you.  When I ran my first 5k last year, I was SPENT.  My legs hurt and I was relegated to the couch afterwards.  Now that I’ve increased my endurance the miles don’t have the same effect, but that is because my body is more conditioned.  Don’t go out there expecting to rock out five miles and feel guilty if you can’t if you are just getting started.  Challenge your body and your endurance. 

I must admit, I was a bit surprised by how tired and sore I was after the half.  I have been reading quite a few blogs with girls training for marathons and they talk about their 15/18/20 mile run as just another training run.  Well let me tell you, 13.1 miles was HARD and punishing.  Amazing, but still punishing.  Perhaps I’ll reach that point where they become just another race, but for now, I am happy with where I am at.   I guess this was my long-winded way of saying that you cannot compare yourself to ANYONE else.  😀

Thoughts on My Training Plan

I created my training plan following Hal Hidgon’s Novice Half-Marathon training plan.   His training plan calls for twelve weeks; I basically started from week four since I was coming off of the Boilermaker 15k and had a decent base to start with.  I started training on July 26 and trained for eight weeks.  I ran three times a week, with a long run on the weekends and “short”/medium runs during the week.  My form of cross-training was hot yoga and I loved it.  It is the perfect complement to a running routine in my opinion!

Mileage wise, I ran 176.75 miles over the eight weeks, including the half-marathon.  My highest mileage month was September at 82.2 miles, and my highest mileage week was 21.05 in mid-September.  My longest training run was 11 miles, and I also ran two ten milers.  Did I feel prepared come race day?  Absolutely!  Would I follow this training plan again?  Heck yes!  I felt like I was training for something but was still able to maintain some semblance of a social life, which I’ll get into shortly.

Essentially, good ol’ Hal’s plan worked perfectly for me.  I missed a few short runs here and there (it happens!) and I still felt confident on race day. 

Fuelage/Weight During Half-Marathon Training

During half training, my mileage picked up significantly which, in turn, led to increased hunger (duh).  When you are training for an endurance event, you need to fuel your body to function (I’m looking at you, Melissa! 😉 )  Towards the end of training, I wanted carbs, carbs and more carbs.  Moreso than usual, since I always want carbs.  😀  I weighed myself once towards the end of training and I think I gained 2-3 pounds.  My clothes still fit the same and I lost an inch on my stomach so I’m thinking it was just water weight.  Which brings me to my next point.  Hydrating is essential during training.   At the height of training I was drinking at least 100 ounces of water a day, and even more on my hot yoga days.  I have a hard time imagining someone that doesn’t drink a lot of water- I would seriously shrivel up from thirst!

Fueling during runs– For any run over seven miles, I would fuel with a gu packet.  My fuel of choice is without a doubt chocolate mint gu.  Yum.  I used to fuel with clif shot blocks but after receiving a free gu sample I never went back.  The shot blocks were wicked chewy and kind of awkward.  The only caveat with using gu is that you should probably take it with water to wash it down.  Very necessary.  During my 10 and 11 milers I fueled with a pack and a half to two packs of gu, and I felt great.  I know some may have stomach issues with gu, so make sure to test it out!  I love it!

Time Commitment/Having a Life During Training

Although training for a half requires a bit of dedication and time, it is still definitely possible to maintain a balanced life.  I traveled to Long Island for a reunion with my college besties, went to a week-long conference in Lake Placid, traveled to Buffalo for a wedding and was IN a wedding (and had too good of a damn good time) and still fit everything in.  Granted, I had to make a few adjustments here and there but my life was NOT all running.  I’m not sure I could say the same if I were training for a full, though 😉


When training for a half-marathon, you will become reacquainted with nature.  I saw one fox (awesome!  but creepy), numerous bunnies and chippies chipmunks, ingested two gnats (barf) and fished two gnats from my eye that were behind my contact (sneaky little suckers!).


I was fairly lucky during this training cycle.  My biggest issue was pain on the top of my foot (I think tendonitis from overuse) and random blisters here and there.  Plus the loss of one toenail (with another one currently purple and on its way out).  Hot yoga and an intense love affair with the foam roller kept my IT Band and knees very happy.  Overall, I would deem this training cycle injury-free 🙂

Weeks Leading Up to the Race

In the two weeks before the race, I decided to forgo alcohol and heels.  Of course, that all went out the door a week before the race when I attended a very fun wedding.  I had about 3-4 glasses of wine so it wasn’t too crazy but I still felt guilty.  It ended up working out fine.  I need to be easier on myself!  I am glad that I stuck to the no heels rule and will be implementing that rule before my next big race as well. 

So, those are my thoughts on training for my first half-marathon.  Have you trained for a distance event?  Do you have anything to add?  I’m excited to take a small(ish) break from distance running.  A break will rejuvenate me- I’m already excited to start training for my next half in the spring! 

Have a good one folks!


Filed under Goals, Half Marathon, Running

Hudson Mohawk Half-Marathon Recap!

Technically the race started at 8:30 A.M. on Sunday, 10/10/10 (perfect day for a race, eh?).  I’ve been training for the half for over two months now so on Friday when I began my final prep (downloading new songs for the iPod, laying out my race clothes) it felt as though it really started for me.  Obsessively Writing out lists of what I would be wearing/what gear I needed/reminding myself I needed to pick up a bagel for the morning and the like were all a part of this journey to 13.1. 

Saturday brought the race expo and I was super excited- my first one ever!  There were two exciting things about the race expo: 1) I ran into Jen and my friends Nicole and Michael and 2) my race bib had an odd number on it!  A double odd number!  I kind of have a thing about odd numbers.  The alarm always has to be set to an odd number (Brian thinks I’m weird and yeah, I guess I am).  Anyway, the number itself was odd (2383) and when you added all of the numbers together (2+3+8+3=16 and 1+6=7) it was an odd number.  I thought that this bode well for the race 🙂

Saturday night I went out to an early dinner with some friends and looked longingly at their glasses of wine.  None for me, no sir.  I was taking this half-marathon seriously!  Nevermind the wine and dancing at my friends’ wedding last weekend 😉 .  I did carb load to my heart’s desire with some cheesy artichoke dip with french bread.  Excellent pre-pre race fuel!  When I got home on Saturday night, I reviewed my clothing checklist:

  1. Girls on the Run tech tee with lucky race number attached
  2. nike running capris
  3. purple sports bra (I developed a weird affinity towards this sports bra)
  4. thick balega running socks
  5. bondi band
  6. throwaway fleece from old navy
  7. sneakers with timing chip attached
  8. Road Id/iPod fully charged/garmin fully charged/glide for toes

I was all set to go so I set my alarm for 6:01 (heh) and 6:19.  Originally I was going to have to leave my house at 5:30 (wah) to catch the bus to the start but my friend Nicole generously offered to take me to the start at 7:30 since she was bringing her husband anyway.  Sah-weet!  An extra hour of sleep could only be a good thing.  I got a restful night’s sleep, got dressed and checked  35 degrees.  Awesome.  There was nothing I could do about it though!  Good thing I had my throwaway fleece!  I had half of a plain bagel with maple peanut butter with three ibuprofen to stop any foot pain in its tracks (which would come back to bite me in the ass quite literally after the race but that story is for another time.  Or for never).  The temperature gauge on my car was not looking any more promising- 38 degrees.  I received a surprise good luck phone call from Brian all the way from Afghanistan, giving me an extra confidence boost! 🙂  I arrived at Nicole’s mother’s house and we were on our way! 

The race literature indicated that the parking at the half was very limited.  Not really.  I was pleased to see that the start was at the Colonie Town Park.  I spent many days in summer camp there swimming in the pool and jumping off the high dive (aside from one embarrassing incident where I climbed to the top of the high dive, walked out to jump and stood paralyzed with fear for a good five minutes before I climbed back down).  We arrived with a half-hour to start time and I figured I should use the bathroom while I could.  The line was around the building!  I waited for 25 minutes and did my thing, arriving to the start area with three minutes to spare.  Talk about a close call!  

This is right before the gun went off (I’m in the green/black waving at the camera):

Miles 1-5: The starting gun sounded and we were off!  The first mile of the race was very congested- it was kind of trail like and the space was limited so the runners were shuffling at that point.  Still, we were running and I was so happy! 😀  We came across some bag pipers around .75 miles and that was neat!  I was waffling between wearing my headphones or not, since I heard they weren’t allowed and you could be DQd.  Yeah, that would have sucked!  Tons of people were wearing them so I figured I was okay. 

This was around half a mile into the race- the runners were still pretty crowded together:

The first five miles passed in a blur.  I had no foot pain at all and the weather had warmed up slightly.  I was still wearing my fleece though!  I remember stepping on a branch and it sounded like a gunshot- I startled all of the girls around me!  Yikes.  I told myself to just break it down into two 5 milers and one 5k- totally doable!

The half started on a pretty trail and then we ran through some roads and past a train track.  Once I hit mile five I stopped off next to a gas station to take the first of two mint chocolate gus that I would take during the race.  It didn’t slow my time. In fact, I realized that I was way ahead of my predicted schedule!  I kept looking down and seeing my pace hovering around 9:40 and I felt great!  I tried not to push it much harder than that because I didn’t want to fade out at the end.

Throughout the race there were mile markers indicating which mile we had reached, with sayings from a sponsor.  One sign in particular really resonated with me- I think it was mile 4- it said “trust your training.”  Damn right, I thought!  I think it can be so easy to doubt yourself come race day but you just have to remember- you put in the time and the effort and your body knows what to do.  Trust it!  😀

Miles 6-10:  Once we hit mile six I took off my fleece and left it on the side of the road.  I heard that the race peeps come by and pick them up and donate them.  I’m hoping that’s the case.  This portion of the run was mainly on roads that were not closed for traffic- we had to stay inside the cones or else risk being hit!  I began to understand why they forbade headphones and took them off.  We were running next to a major highway (on the other side of a fence) so that was interesting.  I actually drive down it on the way to work so now when I do I will look along the road and think about the half 🙂

Around 9.75 miles my foot started to ache a bit.  At that point I had less than four miles left so I told myself to suck it up!  We entered the bike path portion of the race and it was really pretty- right next to the water.  Here’s a gripe: the bike path was not closed to bikers, which was fine with me.  A lot of them announced that they were coming on your left, etc.  However, this one woman kept riding around the runners without a helmet on wearing headphones, not announcing herself or anything.  Who does that?  She passed me going back and forth a few times (and she definitely was not affiliated with the race).  So weird. 

Miles 10-13.19:  This part of the race was really nice but also challenging.  I ventured off the path at mile 10 to take another mint chocolate gu.  My foot was acting weird on and off but it wasn’t too bad.  The weirdest thing was that I felt like I was running by myself.  There really was no one around me.  I looked at the river and felt at peace.  I was running my first half-marathon, the leaves were crunching under my feet, the sun was shining.  Life was good.  Once I reached mile 11.01 I was at a new personal distance record and couldn’t stop smiling!  I came across some runners and zipped right by them.  I felt really strong!  I got to the last half mile and started to get really excited.  There were a group of drummers- my parents were watching them and apparently I ran right by them!  I came down the chute and saw Amanda and my friends Nicole and Kristin 🙂  I was so happy to see them, as you can tell by this photo!

 As I approached the finish line I noted that the time read 2:14 something and I couldn’t believe it!  After I crossed the finish line I felt a bit like a crazy disoriented person.  I was like that with the Boilermaker too.  A nice volunteer cut my timing chip off and I was handed my mylar blanket (cool!  I felt official) and race medal.  Final chip time: 2:13:33.  Yippee!

(Many thanks to Nicole, my unofficial race photog 😉 )

I hurried off to find my friends and family.  The word yay was tossed around quite a bit (by me.  I have an extensive vocabulary).  I found my friend Bekah and she and her husband and friend Sindy made these awesome signs- “toenails are overrated” and “run like you stole something!”  Hilarious!  And awesome. 


Jen and I after finishing! (photo courtesy of Jen) Don’t we look legit in our mylar blankets? 

Afterwards, a delicious brunch was had, which included a raspberry mimosa.  That probably wasn’t a good idea since I didn’t drink much water during the race (race foul!) but it was delish 🙂 

As I’m sitting here typing this, my feet are yelling at me (seriously, so many blisters dangit) and it is hard to walk around (ice bath and all!) but I am so happy!  When I first started my running journey I always said my ultimate goal was a half-marathon.  Now I am here (I can’t believe it!) and am incredibly proud of myself.  At the same time, I can’t help but ask- when can I start training for a marathon? 😀

Thank YOU for all of your encouragement and support- it truly means a lot.


Filed under Goals, Half Marathon, Race Recap, Running, Uncategorized

I Did It!

After 13.1(9) wonderful miles, I can now call myself a half-marathoner 😀

Official time: 2:13:33 (woohoo!)

You bet I’ll be putting the 13.1 sticker on my car tomorrow morning 😀

I have too many blisters to count and my legs are sore but would I do it again?  In a second,  Now I really want to run 26.2!

Full recap to come in the  morning!  In the meantime, check out my Fall Wadrobe Essentials post over on Courtney’s blog if you are so inclined 🙂



Filed under Goals, Half Marathon, Running

Fitness Goals For June

Hi friends!  Happy Friday and thank you so much for all of the sweet comments on the new site 🙂  The only issue I’m noticing with the transition is that a lot of the comments from Fit to Wed didn’t transfer over here.  No worries though!   This week seemed to really drag at first but it ended up flying by 😀  I was super tired this morning and just wanted to stay cuddled up with this little guy, who was very tired as well:

Isn’t he the cutest?  He always lays in a little ball or under the covers while I get ready for work. 

Yesterday I was able to swing in a four mile run before the “rain” kicked in.  I was supposed to run with a certain friend (I’m looking at you C!!) but she bagged out because of the rain 😉  I absolutely love my new running shoes.  I purchased the same ones as before (Adidas Supernova Glide) but a half-size larger, that is, my normal size.  What a difference wearing 8.5s versus 8s makes.  So yes, the local running store improperly fitted me before, but it’s okay 🙂  I got in 4 miles in just under 4o minutes: 

My legs were feeling it, likely from hot yoga.  It was uber windy out but for whatever reason this run really exerted me, as is evidenced by this hawt photo:

Onwards to my fitness goals for the month of June:

Fitness Goals: June

  • Goal: Work out in the morning at least once a week.  Purpose: Bask in the feeling of accomplishment in getting the workout in before work.  So far:  Uh, no.  I was going to say I ran in the morning on Memorial Day but yeah, that was May and I didn’t have work so it doesn’t really count.  Next week!
  • Goal: Complete all long runs as scheduled.  Purpose:  Rock the Boilermaker!  So far:  Looking good!  I got in my six miler last Monday (Memorial Day) and will be running 6.5 this weekend. 
  • Goal: Hot Yoga 2x weekly, except when traveling.  Purpose:  Sanity, Strength, Stretching.  How’s that for alliteration?  😉  So far:  I’m doing well with this.  My friend Kristin is coming into town this weekend and will be going to hot vinyasa with me.  Yippee!
  • Goal:  Continue with 3 to 4 sets of 10 pushups at least 4 times a week.  Purpose:  Keep up the strength, yo.  So far:  I’ve been keeping to this pretty consistently. 

What are your fitness goals for the month of June?  I had set some pretty detailed goals back in January that I need to review and analyze whether I’ve been keeping up with.

Any fun weekend plans?  I’m going to get organized, practice some yoga, run, read and relax with friends.  Have a good one!


Filed under Bailey, Goals, Running